WordPress has scored an important victory in court against a man who abused the DMCA to censor an article of a critical journalist. The court agreed that the takedown request was illegitimate and awarded WordPress roughly $25,000 in damages and attorneys fees. Automattic, the company behind the popular WordPress blogging platform, has faced a dramatic increase in DMCA takedown notices in recent years. Most requests are legitimate and indeed targeted at pirated content. However, there are also cases where the takedown process is clearly being abused. To curb these fraudulent notices WordPress decided to take a stand in court, together with student journalist Oliver Hotham who had one of his articles on WordPress censored by a false takedown notice. Hotham wrote an article about “Straight Pride UK” which included a comment he received from the organization’s press officer Nick Steiner. The latter didn’t like the article Hotham wrote, and after publication Steiner sent WordPress a takedown notice claiming that it infringed his copyrights. WordPress and Hotham took the case to a California federal court where they asked to be compensated for the damage this abuse caused them. The case is
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